Johnica and Darin’s Destination Wedding in the Riviera Maya, Mexico

Johnica and Darin met through one of her good friends from college, Marc, who happened to be a neighbour of Darin’s. When Marc and Johnica went for lunch one day, they headed back to Marc’s condo to hang out after lunch. Marc mentioned that a really cool guy moved into the neighborhood so they walked down the street and knocked on the door. “Darin invited us in for cocktails and we hit it off instantly,” explains Johnica, “and the rest, as they say is history.”

Johnica works in medical sales and Darin is an entrepreneur and business owner. For Johinca, it was his humour, and for Darin, her beautiful hair that did him in. Their engagement story is very romantic: Darin flew her to San Francisco and then to wine country for her 30th birthday. He proposed the night before she turned 30. She was quick to say “Yes.”

They said their I Do’s this past January in Playa del Carmen, Mexico at the Royal Playa Del Carmen. With 58 guests in tow, both Johnica and Darin’s most memorable moment from the whole experience was seeing each other for the first time as she walked down the aisle. The photos really do this moment justice. A harpist played beautifully to create a very romantic ceremony, and the couple wrote their own vows, which they read to each other for the first time at the ceremony. Darin’s tears brought all their guests to tears as well.

Johnica wore a dress by Waters and Waters with open toe silver shoes, and her ladies chose coral dresses by David’s Bridal. Darin went casual in a white linen shirt and line pants with leather flip flops, while the groomsmen did matching pants but with sky blue linen shirts. Bridesmaids were given custom flip flops to wear and the guys each got cigars. All guests received custom beach bags on arrival filled with a wedding agenda, chapstick, water and Mexican maracas for fun!

They hired a Mexican trio for the cocktail hour and served signature cocktails called the “Bibeau Bliss” – a mix of Kettle One, lemonade and soda. The reception, held in the ballroom was a fun filled event with dancing and a formal dinner. The couple danced to She is Love by Parachute and the special end of the night treat for the guests was a Fire Dancing show. By then, the rain had let up, so guests set up outdoors for a special show. Johnica says of the fire show: “Our friends are still talking about it,” it was so unbelievable. When asked to describe the experience in three words, this sums it up quite perfectly: “Best Day Ever!”

The only unexpected moment at the wedding was the rain. “We planned to have the ceremony, cocktail hour and reception outside,” Johnica explains, “But due to the weather, we had to move the reception inside. At first I was upset but our team did such a good job it was better than we could have imagined. And we all stayed dry!”

Real Wedding advice from Johnica and Darin: “Don’t get caught up in the details and enjoy the moments because they fly by!” says Johnica. She was also very favourable about why hiring a wedding planner is important for such a big day: “I was very indecisive during a lot of the planning process, so I really leaned on Alexandra’s experience and advice. I feel I was able to enjoy the day because I knew she was there taking care of the details. Our guests had such a good time that we had friends that are engaged actually talked to the wedding planner on site to get more information. They had such a great time at our wedding they are thinking about doing something similar. We just got back our professional pictures and there was a stunning shot with us and all of our guests. Darin came up with the best idea when he saw it. We are going send a copy of the picture to all of our guest and invite them to come back for our 5 year anniversary. SAME PLACE, SAME PEOPLE AND SAME DATE – 1-12-2017. Stay tuned for part II.”

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